I UNDERSTAND THAT MANY PEOPLE HAVE NOT HAD PROBLEMS WITH NYLABOME BUT WHY RISK IT...IT COULD STILL HAPPEN. FURTHERMORE, WHY SUPPORT THIS COMPANY THAT IS SELLING PRODUCTS THAT IS KILLING DOGS. NYLABONE IS AWARE OF THE DEATHS THAT THIER PRODUCT IS CAUSING AND AS LONG AS THEY ARE STILL MAKING MONEY THEY WILL DO NOTHING TO CHANGE IT.DOES NOT SOUND LIKE A LOVE OF DOGS (ANIMALS) TO ME...MORE LIKE A LOVE OF MONEY. I HOPE IT DOES NOT TAKE THE LOSS OF A DOG TO GET YOU AND OTHERS TO HELP IN THIS CRUSADE AGAINST NYLABONE...AND ALL IF THEIR PRODUCTS.
I MISS MY ZIGGY. SO MUCH PAIN THAT I HAVE NEVER EXPERIENCED BEFORE. MY HEART HAS BEEN RIPPED TO SHREDS.
PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD...THIS NEEDS TO STOP! NOW!
R.I.P. ZIGGY 06/19/04 - 04/09/05...WE MISS YOU LITTLE MAN.........SO MUCH.
HAD WE ONLY KNOWN THIS INFORMATION BEFORE.
Nylabone Dog Chew Toy
(Note Bene: The product in the article below was, I believe, about the plastic Nylabone. Even so, I do not recommend the rubber chews which have the little rubber "nubs" on them. The nubs can be chewed off and swallowed. Rubber is not digestible. Rubber chew toys should be solid, hard rubber with no easily gnawed off parts, and should be replaced about every 6 months or so - depending on how much they are chewed. D.B.
Special Report on Nylabone aired by KHOU TV Houston, Texas, November 15, 2001
This product is apparently killing hundreds of dogs every year.
We all love to pamper our pets, but could your present be a killer? Some pet owners say yes and it's something your dog could be chewing on right now.
It's that time again, time to take the puppies for a walk. And Denise Allen doesn't mind, Alaska is like her child and so is Timber. Allen said, "He was the one I wanted. He chose me. He sat in my lap looked at me and said I'm going home with you." For five years Timber was a show dog, a therapy dog and the perfect companion. That is he was until a massive intestinal infection forced his owners to euthanize him. "I told him it was time to go night night," Allen remembered, "It was kinda one of those things where the dog told me it was time, it was ok. It was time. I just petted him and he died." The surgery that tried to save Timber instead found what made him sick, a piece of synthetic dog bone an inch thick lodged inside him, it slowly tore him apart.
Denise Allen said it was a piece of a Plaque Attacker made by Nylabone, there are several versions. It's one of the biggest selling pet products in the world specifically marketed to clean dogs' teeth. It is also marketed to be safe. The product even carries the ASPCA seal of approval and millions have sold since 1996. Dr. Craig Felton treated Timber and in a letter he said, "The spikes on the dental exerciser fragment definitely contributed to the object wedging and probably were responsible for lacerating the intestinal lining in several locations." It led to massive internal infection and death. Initially, Nylabone told Allen the product that likely killed Timber wasn't theirs. There's only one problem with that, Allen said, "Bless him, if he was going to eat a piece of this bone. It actually has the "o" and the "n" and the "e" and the little registered mark that is on the products."
Allen sued Nylabone because she said no where on the package does the company suggest there is any risk. Allen's Attorney, Debra Corcoran said, "Everything is geared to assure the pet owner that the product is safe, reliable. And because you are using a Nylabone product you don't have to worry about your dog suffering from death or near death." The company settled the day the case was set for trial. Still Denise Allen keeps Timber's ashes on her mantle, five years later. Allen said, "I'd didn't know there were other dogs. I didn't know there was a problem."
Shirley and Harvey Hannah know all about the problem. Shirley remembered, "There was blood down in the corner where he had tried to go hide because when a dog is sick they will generally find a dark place to go." Four years later and miles away in Seminole, Texas, the Hannah's lost their poodle, Rambo. "What really got me was when the vet told me that he had screamed and then died," Harvey said. Their vet found two pieces of what appeared to be Nylabone stuck in Rambo's stomach and intestine. Veterinarian, Dr. Ivan Muennink explained: "When it hung up the intestine keeps moving and so it kind of knotted up over it like and accordion."
The process severely damaged Rambo's intestinal tissue after being undetected for six months. Veterinarians say that's big part of the problem, the symptoms mimic any number of non-fatal intestinal problems and the product does not appear on x-rays. Timber had the same problem; the piece of the rubber bone inside of him did not show up on x-rays.
But what angers these dog owners is it appears Nylabone made a decision to make the products so they would not appear on x-rays. In a court deposition the company's own customer service supervisor said, "Any kind of additive that would make it radio-opaque would be far more detrimental if a dog ingests a piece." Veterinarians disagree, besides it would also lead to detection of pieces in sick dogs.
Harvey Hannah knows what he wants: "Take it off the market, or at least change your packaging and put on warning labels." The company claims that Nylabone is safe, it also says it has no form letter to handle complaints. But a letter to a Virginia woman in 1994 said, "It is most unusual for a Nylabone to break off in such large pieces."
Another letter from the company in 1998 called a dogs illness: "[A]....Tragic, isolated, incident," and added, "It is very unusual for a dog to bite off large pieces of this product." From a letter to a Wisconsin woman in 2000: "What Bach experienced was very unusual and we thank you for bringing this to our attention." And other letters blame the animals themselves: "He is too aggressive a chewer," and "Sophia was too aggressive a chewer." Most of the communications from the company end the same way: "While we do not feel Nylabone Products was negligent in any way, in the spirit of cooperation we are...."
In fact there are so many complaints that the company has an internal form it uses to keep track of all of them. 11 News found cases all over the country, 33 in all in 17 states, from Florida to Michigan to Texas, plus Canada and even in Germany. Dogs from tiny to huge, old to young.
Attorney Debbie Corcoran said she has at least a 120 more, more than 150 cases since 1994 in nearly all 50 states. Corcoran wonders how many more there are. Cases where dogs mysteriously died and the owners could not afford or chose not to have surgery that might have found something. Corcoran said, "It's coldhearted or evidently they aren't animal lovers. I don't know. They're selling animal products but they are not protecting the animals." There are millions of Nylabone products; Plaque attackers sold every year.
Denise Allen said, "If it's millions does that mean that ten thousand dogs dying is acceptable? 20 thousand. I don't know." For the Hannah's Rambo was enough, for Denise Allen Timber was enough. One too many. Debra Corcoran is preparing to file a class action lawsuit against the company right here in Texas. That should happen in the next few weeks.
Neither Nylabone nor its parent company T.F.H. Publications would appear on camera for this story. The company did send 11 News a written statement that said: "Dog chews should be chosen with the same care as children's toys. Owners must take responsibility to examine their dogs chew toys on a regular basis to monitor the product's suitability. Nylabone products have been and continue to be manufactured to high standards."
ADDENDUM: I have since heard from several people who have had problems with this product. The first is an excerpt from one of the emails which was a CC to me but the original was emailed to the Nylabone manufacturer: D.B.
From Julie: I have been compelled to write you as I found out the brother to our dachshund died. This dachshund obtained his Championship and was the breeders pride and .
Just recently Champion Mr. Harley died after chewing off a piece of the Nylabone and swallowed it and it lacerated his intestines.
My heart is broken for this man as he had given to us our precious WaPony as a compassionate gift. I believe it would be in your (Nylabone) best interest to contact him with some condolences. You have no idea how much it costs to put the dog through showing and breeding to obtain a Champion and then lose him for something that could have been prevented.
From Jessica, Jan, 2005: My dog has been throwing up little pieces of nylabone for a couple of days and she is now walking odd too. I do not know if these two problems are related to each other, so I wanted to check if these have been seen together in other dogs.
From Tom, Feb, 2005: SUNNY OUR GOLDEN RETIVER, WAS EXAMINED BY DR. KIM BUNAG,
HE HAS BEEN VOMITING SINCE EATING PIECES OF A NYLABONE 1 WEEK AGO. HE WAS DIAGNOSED WITH ENTERITIS SECONDARY TO NYLABONE INGESTION. HE IS ON BAYTINE TO TREAT THE ENTERITIS & METCLEPRAMIDO TO HELP CONTROL VOMITING.
Note Bene: It is possible that even the so-called "edible" Nylabone products present a danger to dogs. Read the excerpts from the emails below: D.B.
From Andrea, March 28th, 2005: My 10 month old Dachshund just had to have a piece of an edible flavored Nylabone surgically removed from his small intestine. The piece was about an inch in diameter. Luckily his vomiting was caught quickly, and no damage was done to his intestines since it was caught so early on. Just wanted to let you know that even the veterinarian recommended products can pose serious health risks as well.
From Jean-Marie, April 25, 2005:
Hello, Two weeks ago, my beloved English Bulldog, Ziggy died from nylabone becoming lodged in his intestine. The bone perforated the intestine and required major surgery. My little man, only 9 months old, could not survive the recovery process and died after the vets attempted a second surgery. Please help me...I am trying to figure out how I can hold Nylabone accountable and assure that this product does not hurt any more dogs!!!! Thank you.